I’m here from the future to say you don’t
make it in the end. At least it looked
that way as I slipped the hacksawed shackles
of linear time and cracked the spine
on this dog-eared remainder, droning on,
page after page, dusty chapters sifting
down, narrative arc in a lazy slope,
a Great Plains of exposition
extending out in all directions
relieved only by the scrawniest trees
of character development, plot
a trammeled fence row, lyrical
passages snagged on barbs, snapping white
pennants in a windy onslaught of words.
The prayers you launched degrade in low orbit
winking out in turn on the rotating
sanding drum of the mesosphere, conquests
sit forlorn at the far end of the groaning
board, knee to knee under sagging bunting.
Denouement is assured, tidy or
otherwise; already I’ve said too much.
The black and white jacket photo, when was
that taken?, the dedication the truest
part, but the margins crammed with smudgy
doodles and profane retorts, your defaced
gap toothed smile, were by far my favorite bits.